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Old Market (Omaha, Nebraska) facts for kids

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Old Market Historic District
The intersection of Howard and 11th Streets in the heart of the Old Market.
Location Nebraska Omaha, NE
Architect Multiple
NRHP reference No. 79001441
Quick facts for kids
Significant dates
Added to NRHP March 23, 1979

The Old Market is a neighborhood located in downtown Omaha, Nebraska, United States, and is bordered by South 10th Street to the east, 13th Street to the west, Farnam Street to the north and Jackson Street to the South. The neighborhood has many restaurants, art galleries and upscale shopping. The area retains its brick paved streets from the turn of the 20th century, horse-drawn carriages, and covered sidewalks in some areas. It is not uncommon to see a variety of street performers, artists, and other vendors.

Historic designation

The area is on the National Register of Historic Places as a historic district, and borders the former site of the Jobbers Canyon Historic District, as well as the still-existent Omaha Rail and Commerce Historic District and the Warehouses in Omaha MPS. There is a walking tour of historic buildings available from the Omaha Chamber of Commerce. There are also several specifically noted historic buildings within the district.

Historic buildings

Buildings within the Old Market have served a variety of purposes, and were built during various eras. Originally built to sell groceries wholesale and retail to the city of Omaha and beyond, the Old Market district was preceded by the Market House in Omaha's Jefferson Square.

The Old Market district was formed when the Market House still stood. The buildings and businesses included:

  • P. E. Iler Block, a contributing property to the district. Built in 1901, the six story building was originally built as a warehouse. A 1990 rehabilitation converted the building into retail and office space.
  • The Windsor Hotel is a three-story brick building built in 1885. The building was converted into rental residential and commercial space, in 1985. The Broatch Building was built in 1880, and expanded in 1887.
  • The McClure-Smith Building is a two-story brick building that was built around 1878. Originally a steam bakery, a 1985 rehabilitation converted the building to office and retail space.
  • The A. I. Root Building is a three-story brick building constructed, in 1904, as offices. The building was doubled in size by the addition of an equal-size portion, in 1909. In 1993, it was converted to retail and residential spaces.
  • The Morse-Coe Shoe Company, now known as the Mayfield Apartments, was built as a five-story warehouse and light industrial building, in 1894. A 2002 rehabilitation converted the structure to a mixed-use of apartments, retail space and parking. The George H. Lee Building was built, in 1903, as warehouse and office space.


Most of the buildings in the Old Market are brick, and the streets throughout are covered with bricked surfaces, cobblestone and asphalt. There were also cast-iron fronts, metal cornices, stone trim, and metal sidewalk coverings shelters attached to many of the buildings around the turn of the 20th century.

Building details

Name Built Location NRHP? Notes
Windsor Hotel 1885, 1889 520-524 South 10th Street Yes
Omaha Fire Station Number One 1902-04 514 South 11th Street Yes
P.E. Iler Block 1900-01 1113-1117 Howard Street Yes
Millard Block Number Two 1887 1109-1111 Harney Street Yes Designed by the architecture firm Isaac Hodgson and Son.
Mercer Hotel - Gahm Block 1890–92, 1900 1202-1208 Howard Street; 414-418 South 12th Street Yes Originally designed by architect Charles F. Beindorff, and completely renovated in 1900 by architect Charles Cleves.
Millard Block 1881-82 1101-1107 Harney Street Yes
W.J. Broatch Building 1880, 1887 1209-1211 Harney Street Yes
Steele, Johnson and Company / Baum Iron Company Building 1881 1219-21-23 Harney Street Yes Today, Baum continues to operate at this location as the Baum Hydraulic Company.
Poppleton Block 1886 413-423 South 11th Street Yes
Ernest Myer Building 1912 1015 Howard Street Yes
Hotel Howard 1909 1002-06 Howard Street Yes
Lehman Building 1905 1008-1012 Howard Street Yes
1934 1014 Howard Street Yes
Mercer Block Number Two 1887 501-509 South 11th Street Yes Designed by architect Henry Voss.
Rocco Brothers / Craftsmen Guild 1895 511 South 11th Street Yes
Kosters / Gilinsky / French Cafe Building 1891 1013-1017 Howard Street Yes
Metz Block 1890s 508-10-12 South 10th Street Yes
Public Market 1905 NE corner of 11th and Jackson
Ames Block 1889 1101-1111 Howard Street Yes Designed by the architectural firm of VanBrunt and Howe from Kansas City, Missouri .
Mercer Block Number Three 1905 1102-1112 Howard Street and 414-424 South 11th Street Yes Designed by architect Charles Cleves.
Woolworth Building 1887 1114-24 Howard Street Yes Designed by the firm of Mendelssohn and Lawrie.
A.I. Root Building 1904, 1909 1210-12-14-16 Howard Street Yes Designed by architect F. A. Henninger.
Morse-Coe Shoe Company Building 1894 1119-23 Howard Street Yes
George H. Lee Building 1903 1115-17 Harney Street Yes Designed by architect John Latenser.
1901 (est) 1205-07 Harney Street Yes
George Warren Smith Building 1880 1213-15 Harney Street Yes
1880 1113 Harney Street Yes
National Building 1915 406 South 12th Street Yes
Baker-Corey-McKenzie Building 1919 1120-24 Harney Street Yes Designed by the architectural firm of John Latenser and Sons.
P.E. Iler Block 1881 1108-10-12 Harney Street Yes
Millard-Kirkendall and Jones Building 1887 1102-06 Harney Street Yes
Omaha Crockery Building 1918 1116-20 Harney Street Yes Designed by architect J. Christ Jensen
Smith Building 1877 1113 Farnam Street Yes
Dewey and Stone Building 1876 1115-17 Farnam Street Yes
Clark and French Building 1879 1119 Farnam Street Yes


ConAgra Foods relocated their headquarters to neighbor the Old Market in 1991, after a contentious battle with local advocates after the City of Omaha demolished the Jobbers Canyon Historic District.

2016 Old Market explosion

On January 9, 2016, at 2:51 pm local time, a large explosion occurred at M's Pub on the northwest corner of 11th and Howard streets causing a large fire to break out. The fire and subsequent efforts to extinguish it caused a total loss of the 100-year-old building as firefighters worked through the night and following morning. Temperatures at the time were in the sub-zero range causing large-scale freezing of the water from the fire fighting efforts. The explosion is believed to have been caused by a gas line that was accidentally ruptured by contractors on behalf of Verizon installing fiber-optic cables. Although several people were injured during the explosion, there were no fatalities. Eyewitnesses reported injuries sustained by multiple people within the immediate vicinity of the explosion, although these were not broadcast by local media outlets.

Image gallery

Businesses located along Howard street in the Old Market.
Old Market Omaha NE 2010
Many of the original warehouses in the Old Market have been converted into lofts, such as the buildings above. The building on the right was heavily damaged by the January 2016 explosion and fire.
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